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|League of Women Voters of California Education Fund
Read the answers from all candidates.
1. What does California need to do to address the current budget crisis?
California must reduce unnecessary government spending, make the cuts necessary to reverse the unprecedented expansion of state government in recent years that produced the current crisis, and reduce regulation and taxes to retain and attract business and investment. Under Governor Schwarzenegger's leadership, the state must restore confidence, boost enthusiasm and instill optimism about California opportunity. This change of attitude will create the foundation for a strong economy, leading to more jobs, more income and more revenue to fund critical programs.
2. What should the state's priorities be for K-12 education? For the Community College System?
Education is key to a strong and competitive economy. California must provide effective education for all students, reward performance for both teachers and schools. Education decisions should be restored to the local level wherever possible, along with the funding to implement those decisions. Better management and stronger community controls are the keys to better schools. K-12 needs clear and objective standards for student performance and uniform, simplified and effective testing. Both K-12 and the Community College System should prepare students to have a choice, to enter a suitable career or to continue higher education. Education should be scaled to needs of students at different performance levels and should encourage the highest performing students who will be the economic and civic leaders of the future. Community colleges have a dual purpose, to provide vocational training for students who want to go directly into career opportunities and also to offer cost-effective preparation for students who want to go onto higher education.
3. What measures would you support to address California's water needs?
California needs a comprehensive approach to statewide water needs that includes new surface and groundwater storage, improved conveyances, and practical solutions to conservation that respect water rights and balance all needs. We have plenty of water for all uses, but we must manage it effectively and equitably.
4. What should the Legislature be doing to address the needs of Californians without health insurance?
The Legislature needs to create conditions to rebuild California's economy, to provide more jobs and more opportunity for employers who can offer health insurance. The Legislature must rein in the cost drivers in health care, such as fraud and unnecessary legal challenges, by making fraud laws clearer, tighter and tougher and by enacting tort reforms. Such reforms, combined with reduced regulation, red tape and other business obstacles, will attract more insurers and health care providers. Government-supplied health care or government-mandated health care is the wrong solution and must be avoided.
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